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Thursday, October 20, 2005

NERICA

 There are lots of people starving in Africa, and many countries try to help them by offering skills to make food. In Japan, we eat rice as our principal food. Rice is healthy, and it can be stocked for a long time. And right now there is a movement to grow rice in Africa.
 The accepted notion was that rice plant grown in Asia and in Africa cannot be breed together. But in 1992, Dr. Jones who worked in WARDA (West Africa Rice Development) succeeded in beeding rice plants of Asia and Africa. And the series of this new rice is called NERICA (New Rice for Africa). Right now there are 18 kinds of Nericas. The feature of Nerica is that it has a strong stem, it grows faster which gives time to grow other plants, the plant length is long so you don't need to bend, and it can resist the major bugs that eats rice plants.
 Uganda is the only country in Africa that the Nerica is grown in farm house level. In 1999, Uganda selected 3 NARIC from the upland rice variety and the number 3 Naric is Nerica 4. Uganda distributed the Narics to the private companies and that seed was distributed to farm houses.
 Nericas are spreading fast in Sub-Saharan Africa. In 2002, Nerica 1, 2, 3 and 4 were the top varieties selected by farmers in trials in Benin, Burkina Faso, côte d’Ivoire, The Gambia, Ghana, Mali, Sierra Leone and Togo. Within West Central Africa, Côte d’Ivoire released the first two Nerica varieties in 2000, and Nigeria released one in 2003. Farmers in The Gambia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone are growing several Nerica varieties. In Benin, Gabon, Mali and Togo, several Nerica varieties are under extension. Uganda has released a Nerica variety as "Naric-3". Ethiopia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, and Tanzania are evaluating several Nerica varieties.
 
 Since rice isn't the principal food in West Africa, there are very few researchers and thus their knowledge and skill level is low. Also there aren't much machines too. It will be a long way to spread Nerica throughout Africa. But I hope Nerica will help save many starving people in Africa someday.

References

  1. Institution of Science in Society
  2. Gaiko Forum (November 2005, No. 208

2 Comments:

  • At 10:31 AM, Blogger Aegis said…

    Hey Ai-Chan! First of all is an apology, as this isn't a response to your post.

    Anyhow, I really want you to teach me HTML codes. Your Blog looks awfully awesome! I was peaking at your Blogs sourse to see if I can figure out something... Nope... lol

    Anyways, hit me back!
    Daishin

    http://letsquit.blogspot.com/

     
  • At 6:31 AM, Blogger sidewalker said…

    Hi,
    Here are some links you might be interested in. They relate to GM crops, GM seeds and Africa. I don't know if the rice you wrote about is different, but there is a lot of resistance to GM crops. The largest company, Monsanto, seems to be at the heart of a lot of controversy.

    http://www.gmwatch.org/archive2.asp?arcid=1332

    http://www.able2know.com/forums/about46592.html

    http://www.connectotel.com/gmfood/gmafrica.html

    http://www.i-sis.org.uk/GMCIFA.php

    http://www.corpwatch.org/article.php?id=7188

    http://www.greens.org/s-r/17/17-16.html

     

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